1000 years ago there was a church in Nottage, near to where the Rose and Crown is now. With the growth of Newton, 800 years ago the church of St John the Baptist was built and the Nottage Church left to rot.
After the Second World War communion services were held in ‘Redlands’ (next to West Park School). A need was felt for a church and in 1948 a small wooden church was erected on the present site on land donated by Mr Blundell of Nottage Court. The building was an ex-Army Church, and two Nissen huts left on the site by American forces stationed there during the war were used as a schoolroom. This church was consecrated by the Bishop of Llandaff on 24th March 1948.
In 1968, the Nissen huts were demolished and a classroom style wooden church hall built funded by sale of land for housing – now the Glade. In the 70s, a grant was received to make the car park and build boundary walls. This hall was used as a community hall by many local organisations, as well as the Sunday School.
In the 70s, there was a rapid growth in the population of Nottage and it was felt that a new permanent church was needed to accommodate the growing congregation. Fundraising went on in a half-hearted way. In the 80s, the whole Parish was fundraising to renovate the organ in All Saints. This project was completed in 1988.
On St David’s Day 1989, the Building Fund was launched to replace the crumbling church and hall with a modern permanent Church/ Hall structure. By then, there was £22,000 in the Building Fund. Peter Millis from our congregation was appointed architect although he had already been approached for a design some years before. A Fund Raising Committee was set up with members from the three churches. The first chair was Shirley Ash. Later I took over as chair. Monthly meetings were held and many ideas put forward.
Publicity was very important to raise awareness in the community and newsletters were hand distributed to every house in Nottage on several occasions as well as newspaper articles. One of the first ideas was to issue Founders Bonds at £10 each. These were designed by Gwyn Petty in his calligraphy and co-ordinated by Trevor Hopkins. The Scheme was launched by Bishop Roy who signed the Master Certificate along with Rector David John and the two church wardens, Mair Jones and David Parry. By mid-1992 £8000 had been raised from bonds. Names were entered in a beautiful book which is on display in a donated display case in the foyer in St David’s.
The 200 Club was dedicated to the fund and raised £5000. Horace Durban made the wooden numbers and the tumbler for them. He also made collecting boxes in the form of Celtic Crosses for the three churches showing the target and how much money had been raised.
Everyone entered into the spirit of fundraising and many events took place – many organised by non-church members. We held several Spring Fairs in the Grand Pavilion, a dance in the Esplanade Hotel, concerts, sponsored walks and bike rides, a flower festival, and many coffee and sherry mornings. We collected tons of aluminium cans, stamps and coins to sell. Janet Gibbon made hundreds of Welsh cakes and raised over £2000.
Alongside this, a big effort was made to seek grants and donations, trawling through a large tome to find suitable grants to apply for (it would be a little easier today on the internet). Companies were written to.
We also received many large donations and legacies. By July 1992, we had received £33,000 from events, £38,000 from donations and £43,500 in grants and £21,800 in bank interest. At that time, only donations of over £6,000 could be gift aided. The total was £183,500 and the cost of phase 1 of the church £186,000.
There will be more information about the building of the church in the Part Two.
As St David’s celebrates its 25th anniversary, let’s find out about the building of the church from Pat Parry.
Fundraising for the new church included sales by Jean Flower of hundreds of mugs and tea towels with the new church design.
1st March 1989 Building scheme launched. Estimated cost £250,000. The Project Committee Chair was George Tinkler, the Fund Raising Committee Chair was Shirley Ash and the Architect was Peter Millis. Following intensive fundraising and grant seeking the PCC gave the go-ahead to proceed in 1991.
August 1991 Tenders received and awarded to the builders Edmund-Webster
November 91 The project was to take place in stages in order that church and hall activities could continue without a break and so that sufficient funds could be accrued to complete the project. Phase 1, cost £161,000 included demolition of the old church and the back part of the hall, plus building of the church part of the new building. Building to commence in January 1992.
January 1992- 25 Parish members met at Llandaff Cathedral where they received a blessing from Bishop Roy and a message of encouragement which was carried together with a commemorative spade, donated by Wilkinson Sword, back to St David’s in time for the Epiphany lunch at All Saints. This is where we first met Fr Philip with Maggie and Baby Elen. £3700 was raised in sponsorship for this walk which took place over 2 days. The last service in the old church was on Epiphany Sunday
8th January 1992 Cutting of the 1st sod by Mrs Foster aged 98, widow of Canon Foster, the oldest member of our congregation, watched by Emma Salvatore, 13 months, the last baby baptised in the old church. Following this church services were held in the remains of the old hall in very cramped conditions. People at the back had to sit on tables and a table was used for the Altar.
6th November 1992 Completion of the Church.
12th November 1992 Consecration of the Church by Bishop Roy. Many clergy attended for this very special occasion. Water for the blessing of the church was brought from the holy well of St David in Moor Lane. The service was videoed by our son Rhydian and copies sold. At the last service in the hall the electric organ, played by Marjorie Evans on that occasion, blew up due to a surge in power so a new instrument was bought for the new church.
15th November 1992 Thanksgiving Service for all those who contributed to the project.
December 1992 Sufficient funds were available to progress to stage one of the hall – demolition of the old hall, laying the foundations and building toilets and a boiler room. Following this hall users were able to use the back of the church as a folding partition was installed.
February 1993 It was decided to have a break from the intensive fund raising but fund seeking continued.
July 1993 Mrs Foster celebrated her 100th birthday with a party in the back of the church. She died soon after this and in January 1994 her niece donated the magnificent sum of £15,000 in her memory.
April 1994 The application for ‘Capital Grants to Voluntary Youth Services, Village Halls and Community Centres’ for 1994/1995 was successful. Win Griffiths, our MP at the time, and others worked hard to achieve this. Half the grant was from Mid Glamorgan Education Committee, a quarter from Ogwr Borough Council and a quarter from other sources, including the above sum which helped enormously. Estimated cost of the hall including work already completed was £90,000.
October 1994 Edmund-Webster, the builder for phase 1, was awarded the contract after going out to tender.
December 1994 Building of hall resumed.
19 May 1995 Completion of building project
27th May 1995 First Wedding- Sara Millis, (daughter of the architect) and Darren Powell
July 1995 Official Opening by Bishop Roy
December 1995– End of Fundraising
4 May 1996 Second Wedding Gareth Parry, (son of Pat and David) and Antonia Rowlands.